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JohnMcMahon

Fuckbiscuitshitangels (Warren Ellis)

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You need to read "Planetary"! It's not just a costumed superhero title.

It's the best thing Ellis ever wrote and is one of my favourite comic series.

 

I'd pass on "Authority" if you don't like superheroes.

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I agree with Christian about Planetary. It's leaps and bounds ahead of everything else Ellis has done (yes, even Transmetropolitan). Not to mention, Cassaday's art is simply stunning.

 

I've never read The Authority, though, so I have no clue about it.

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Planetary may read well in trades but it doesn't seem like there's enough content in each issue to warrant the long wait between issues. Transmetropolitan on the other hand seemed like it had almost too many ideas in most issues which is the opposite of how Ellis currently operates. These days it feels like the ideas he conveys in most of his series are stretched out and not as rich as the ones he had in his 20s. But I guess now that's he's a big name, he can get more mileage and cash by creating more series and not putting most of his ideas into just one or two series.

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Transmetropolitan on the other hand seemed like it had almost too many ideas in most issues

 

That's true of the first couple of years, but very much not the case by the end. I actually like the final year or two of Transmet a lot more than many people, but it definitely suffers from Ellis' discovery of decompression. I'm glad I was able to read the last 20 issues or so of the title in one go, that's for sure - the experience of reading it month-by-month must have gotten pretty painful at times.

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I'd say the same thing about "Planetary". Recently, since Ellis has been concentrating on the Four, each issue reads very thinly.

But, at the beginning of the series, each issue was worth the wait.

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I bought Transmat each month since it's first issue under the Helix banner. I never really cared that much about the whole presidential election storyline which did seem to take forever in the title's final year or so. I was always more interested in the whole future world Ellis created. I preferred the slice of life single issues which delved into the history and inhabitants of the city. That's where all the creativity was. Those two glossy special issues with the various artists and clips from his column were more interesting than any of the over-reaching arcs.

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Oh yes, Planetary is must read material.

 

I love Transmet and I have to agree with Andy, the presidential stuff was boring. The best part of that series was the crazy ass world, people and technology that Ellis created.

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I've really got to get around to reading more Transmet. I want to, but everytime I think about buying some Trades, I always end up finding something else to buy at the store that I don't have to special order!

I've only read the first Trade and the Winter's Edge stories and those two prestige format books.

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Transmetro was really good towards the middle. During the end it got a bit boring but was pretty good.

 

Right now Planetary is on hiatus till febuary. Then it will most likely have a regular monthly schedule. Thats just what I was told.

 

Ellis has some good stuff. I havent really checked out his other new stuff. He is coming out with a new team book. And I'v heard Fell and his other book is pretty good. Iron Man was so-so, but the wait and the fact that the story wasnt going anywhere. Kind of turned me off. I still need the planetary trades, and his Stormwatch and Authority stuff. Not to mention a ton more other things.

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Ellis talking on his Engine Forum (which is shaping up quite nicely, it's got all the best bits of the old WEF with little early sign of the shit parts) -

 

Okay, I've gotten a bunch of reports in, and some news from Image. Those of you who aren't retailers might find interest in the way this whole mess works.

 

1) We did a fairly big overprint on FELL 1, as Image wanted you to have copies for a long time to come. More than 500 copies have been reordered as of Friday afternoon, and there are plenty left. Such was our intention.

 

2) HOWEVER: Orders on FELL #2 are around 16K. Now, here's the thing -- FELL #1 eventually came in around 25K. We overprinted several thousand on top of that. If you think I'm going to let Image overprint to 30K on orders of 16, you're crazier than I am. I will have Erik Larsen's supply of pies poisoned first.

 

(For the laypeople: a 30K printrun on orders of 16K means that if the 14K of extras don't sell, the print cost pretty much erases any money Ben and I earn from the actual ordered books. This is Bad, because I have whisky to buy.)

 

3) SO: All you retailers who are telling me you've sold out or sold most of your initial on FELL #1? I am going to suggest to you that on Monday, you look to your orders on issues 2 and 3. We want to keep all issues of FELL available to you for reorder for as long as possible, we

want you to be able to grow this book and screw two dollars out of as many people as possible.

 

4) BUT: the print run for FELL #2 is going to be set late in this coming week.

 

5) REMEMBER: A trade collection is waaay the hell off in the future. This is a book designed specifically to work in the Direct Market.

 

6) SOB: Please order my book please

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Guest spiderlegs

Re: Transmet: The presidential thing was a tad long, but not bad by any means. It was analogous of the actual election process here in the US which drags on forever. But I agree that the slices of life issues were magnificent. Lonely City was amazing. The Filth of the City, likewise. But, both Lust for LIfe and Dirge were my favorite traded volumes and contained some of Darick's best art and some of Whozza's best expository. L4L was a wild, by the seat of your pants getting to know the characters and the City collection, while Dirge, toward the end of the run, put these characters I'd come to know and love into such peril with a sniper, a super storm, the president, assassins, and I-Pollen. I loved it because SPider fell from his mighty loft and was on the run, not allowed to grow fat writing "I Hate it Here."

 

By the way, for you MySpacers, I started a transmet group: I Hate It Here. In case you're interested...

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I wonder what it's like to be a comic's writer who's done something like a Preacher or Transmet and still have to work full time in the business - you've told your one big, special story but you've still got to pay the bills.

 

Garth Ennis hasn't really bounced back since the end of Preacher, granted he finished Hitman shortly afterwards but since then he's been bouncing around on minor projects while slumming it on Punisher (don't get the love he's getting for that one).

 

Ellis kind of fell apart, decrying company owned work, releasing a slew of average (at best) minis before falling into bed with Marvel, where he's released a slew of average (atbest) minis. Light at the end of that particular tunnel maybe as both Fell and Desolation Jones show huge promise.

 

Grant Morrison seemed to throw himself into superhero work right after the Invisibles, before his triumphant return to Vertigo with a number of quality smaller projects and the TOTALLY AWESOME 7S stuff for DC.

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Ellis kind of fell apart, decrying company owned work, releasing a slew of average (at best) minis before falling into bed with Marvel, where he's released a slew of average (atbest) minis.  Light at the end of that particular tunnel maybe as both Fell and Desolation Jones show huge promise.

In my opinion at least, his Iron Man is much better than average, and is the first ray of the light at the end of the tunnel.

 

I think Warren is a little older and more mature, and knows he can't skate on "The Warren Ellis Voice" anymore. So he is lately conscious of how he uses it and very controlling of it. It peeps out only a little in dialogue in Iron Man (though without its customary outrageousness), it shows in the plotting and action of Desolation Jones, but isn't in full flower there, but it is in Fell, fully informing everything in that book, but in a unique fashion quite different from Transmetropolitan.

 

I don't know, but I think Warren went along until quite recently doing what came naturally to himself. And then he sat down, took stock of himself and his writing, and is working to enforce changes on it.

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Garth Ennis hasn't really bounced back since the end of Preacher, granted he finished Hitman shortly afterwards but since then he's been bouncing around on minor projects while slumming it on Punisher (don't get the love he's getting for that one).

 

That explains the "drunk as fuck" thread.

 

Garf's Punisher is a simple delight.

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Guest jeepers creepers

I guess it's like that one big idea propels them forward where they either sink or swim in the cold dark waters of comics...but thaat really is a good question. There are a few creators who shot their wad and were never heard from again.

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Grant Morrison seemed to throw himself into superhero work right after the Invisibles,  before his triumphant return to Vertigo with a number of quality smaller projects and the TOTALLY AWESOME 7S stuff for DC.

 

Of course, Morrison's not in quite the same league as Ellis or Ennis, in that he's known for a far wider range of projects. Were it not for Preacher or Transmetropolitan (and perhaps Hellblazer and Planetary, to a somewhat lesser degree), neither Ellis nor Ennis would have the status they currently do in the comics industry. Morrison, on the other hand, has proven himself time and time again - even if he'd never written The Invisibles, he'd be held up as one of the best writers the medium has to offer based on Doom Patrol and Animal Man, and even while he was working on The Invisibles, he found time to squeeze in a run on JLA which remains one of the creative high-points of the title's history.

 

On the other hand, there's always Neil Gaiman, who was almost unknown when he began Sandman, and other than the original Books of Magic has done little else seriously noteworthy in the comics field since.

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I think all these "big name" comic writers are like that.

They have one great project to show the world, and then they just kind of flounder around after that. They're still writing good comics and they're still famous, but there's something lost.

I'd say Morrison and Moore are the major big name comic writer to avoid this stigma. Although, Moore and Morrison took a different path than Gaiman, Ennis, and Ellis.

 

I don't know....it could just be time.

Writers tend to lose the ability to tell ground breaking, acclaimed stories as they get older; because truthfully, how many different stories can you write?

Most writers start around their early-20s. They hit their peaks in their early-30s. And, by their early-40s they've begun to burn out.

 

But, at least all these guys made a name for themselves. There are some top-notch comic writers who will be largely forgotten in the annals of comic history, even though they penned some wonderful, touching stories.

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Guest spiderlegs

1602 was kind of cool.

 

And don't forget about The Filth

 

 

'tis true--we all lose our edge as we age. we try not to, some of us remain sharper than others, but by the time we've hit half a century, we're as dull as a sweater.

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I'd say Morrison and Moore are the major big name comic writer to avoid this stigma.

 

I'd agree with that, especially in terms of currently-active creators. Well... to be fair, Moore's not been up to much lately, although I'm looking forward to reading The 49ers when it comes out in paperback - I'm not so excited by LoEG Vol. 3, if only because I'd rather see him come up with something new, but I'm still going to read it, and I'm sure it'll be good), but Morrison's been churning out book after book like a man possessed.

 

Spiderlegs - I thought 1602 was pretty shite, actually, both in itself and in comparison with his earlier work - i'd argue that it's a textbook example of the kind of thing being talked about here, in fact. On the other hand, American Gods wasn't bad, and I'm hearing good things about Anansi Boys, so Gaiman clearly hasn't entirely lost touch with his muse. Perhaps he just needs to take a bit more of a break from comics, until he has something really good to come back with?.

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Well, he really has been. Gaiman wants to work in other industries other than comics (novels, movies).

What else has he had for comics in recent years other than "1602"?

 

I agree about "1602". It was a huge disappointment.

I loved "American Gods" very much though.

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Guest spiderlegs

In fairness, I only read the first two 1602s, but it seemed like it was building to something, I guess I won't bother continuing. I had been picking them up when I find them used, so no big deal, really.

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In fairness, I only read the first two 1602s, but it seemed like it was building to something, I guess I won't bother continuing. I had been picking them up when I find them used, so no big deal, really.

 

 

I liked it. Wasn't great, but worth reading once.

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I thought the series was going to be great also in the first two issues, but it never went anywhere. It was drawn out, there were still characters being introduced in issue #7, and the ending was a huge let-down.

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